I tend to be hard on myself. When I fail or fall short, I’m my biggest critic and it’s helped me become a better man. But it’s not always in my best interest to continue raking myself over the coals for anything.
Why am I writing about this?
One of the people I supervise called in sick today. Naturally, it is inconvenient , but it’s never the end of the world, so to speak.
During our conversation, I could tell that she was having a hard time telling me, as if she was afraid that I’d be irritated (and that never happens-if you’re sick, we let you take leave, and that’s the end of it, period) with her. After probing just a little, she told me that she was beating herself up because she wasn’t at work. Here’s the advice I gave her, that I received from an ex wife:
It’s a little like we have a big bag of sticks that we carry everywhere, and when we remember something in our past that disappoints us, we stop, set down the bag (which can be heavy or light, depending on lots of things), fish out the stick for the thing we’ve remembered, and use it to beat ourselves up with it. After we’re satisfied that it hurts enough, we put the stick in the bag, sling it back on our shoulder, and go on our (less) merry way. Lather, rinse, repeat.
My advice was for her to stop, empty the bag, arrange the sticks and bag in a nice pretty pile, and set it on fire (feel the warmth?).
That’s my advise to all of you as well. Stop beating yourselves up for things you can’t fix. It’s a waste of time.
Hope all of you have a great day.